The 2013 NBA draft is the must-watch affair of the offseason, as this marquee event will forever change the landscape of the league and have a lasting impact for years to come.
You won’t want to miss a single minute of the draft itself, but there’s also plenty to catch up on before and after the big event takes place.
Let’s take a look at where you can watch the happenings, what time things are getting started, which channel to tune into and more in our complete viewer’s guide to the NBA draft.
Main Draft Coverage
When: Thursday, June 27
Time: 7 p.m. ET
Live Stream: ESPN3
When: Thursday, June 27
Time: 5:30 p.m. ET
When: Friday, June 28
Time: 12 a.m. ET
What to Watch For
Who Will Go No. 1?
There are mere hours left until the start of the draft, but still no clear No. 1 overall pick.
A number of viable candidates have emerged on the Cleveland Cavaliers’ radar, but there are still indications that the franchise is entertaining offers and could opt to trade out of the selection.
Regardless of which organization holds the top pick, the lineup of potential No. 1s includes Nerlens Noel, Victor Oladipo, Alex Len, Anthony Bennett and Otto Porter Jr.
While all of these players seem to have respectable futures in the NBA, none are bona fide superstars that will completely alter the direction of a team.
With that in mind, expect the unexpected leading up to the draft and during the event itself.
Surge of International Players in First Round
In the 2012 draft, only one player was picked in the first round that wasn’t established in the United States college system prior to being selected. That was Frenchman Evan Fournier, who went No. 20 overall to the Denver Nuggets.
That’s a significant dip from years like 2002, when six prospects from the international game were selected within the first 30 picks—including Yao Ming at No. 1 overall.
2013 could represent a return to prominence for foreign talent, with as many as six players from overseas vying to come off the board in the first round.
This list includes German point guard Dennis Schroeder, New Zealand center Steven Adams (who played college ball at Pittsburgh), Russian swingman Sergey Karasev, Greek forward Giannis Adetokunbo, Spanish guard Alex Abrines, and French big man Rudy Gobert.
Due to the sheer lack of prospects with high ceilings and intrigue in this draft, many GMs could gravitate towards these high-risk, high-reward projects.
Expect at least four of these international phenoms to get selected in the first round on Thursday night.
Plenty of Trades
We touched on this with the Cavs possibly looking to trade out of the No. 1 spot, but you can expect a ton of other clubs to try and move up or down, in or out of this draft.
There’s been a non-stop surge of rumors and smokescreens being reported by various NBA insiders, with veterans, future assets and more on the line in exchange for the rights to maneuver around the big board.
Some of these include big-name stars such as Chicago’s Luol Deng, who has reportedly been offered up in numerous scenarios, including the No. 1 and No. 3 pick in two separate trades according to ESPN’s Marc Stein.
Stein and Chad Ford also noted that young players with plenty of promise are also available, including Sacramento’s Jimmer Fredette and Brooklyn’s MarShon Brooks.
Regardless of whether or not these reports are true, you can be assured that a handful of trades are pushed through in the coming hours.